We’re thrilled to announce the release of our GSX for IronPort! Now you can take advantage of comprehensive monitoring capabilities to track IronPort health, performance, and usage, as well as network availability and latency. At the same time, you’ll be able to continuously test and troubleshoot the messaging environment and cache issues, know which types of emails have been processed versus rejected.
What is IronPort?
If you’re not familiar with IronPort, it’s primarily used for aspects of mail security — such as email encryption, antispam, and antivirus. This makes it a critical part of the messaging environment, so having visibility into the status of its health and usage is essential. When the IronPort fails, your entire email flow is shut down: nobody in your company will be able to send or receive emails. Usually, this occurs because performance and health issues have a global impact on email performance and service delivered to end users.
How GSX Monitors IronPort?
GSX monitors IronPort, providing graphs and reports on its status and alerting you to any noteworthy activity. By performing “end to end scenarios,” GSX automatically and regularly sends a test email to an echo service on the internet. This allows admins to know the availability and performance of the interaction between the IronPort and the messaging system, and check if emails are able to successfully go through the IronPort to an external domain, as well as from an external domain to the end user’s mailbox.
System Availability and Performance
GSX is able to quickly define if the IronPort is overloaded by checking:
- CPU and RAM usage;
- Disk IOs: these are a good indicator to prevent the IronPort from being saturated with requests (e.g., if too many emails are going in and out of the appliance, or if the virtual machine has resource issues);
- Queue utilization and availability status: in order to process thousands and thousands of emails, the IronPort stores them quickly into a queue where they wait for processing. This is important to validate the sizing of the architecture;
- Oldest message age: GSX will alert you if some messages are in the queue for more than a certain amount of time. If messages are stuck in queues, there is obviously an issue (e.g. configuration issue, problem with the email recipient, outside domain has major issues, etc.);
- Mail transfer threads: the number of active processes that send and receive emails at the same time (essentially measuring the load of the IronPort);
- License management: license option availability in real-time to prevent any unexpected critical service failures;
- Cache performance: detects cache issues before they affect performance, including network issues that can degrade cache performance;
- Email processing: multiple counters to provide real-time visibility in the main job of the IronPort, including monitoring for abnormal usage;
- Ingoing and outgoing connections: keeping track of how many emails enter and leave the IronPort;
- Total active recipients: defining the email usage of the company;
- Number of messages received, recipients received, delivered recipients: tracking all successful actions;
- Message failure indicators: tracking all actions that have failed, including bounced, rejected, and deleted recipients;
- Active messages: the number of messages in the work queue that have yet to be processed;
- Active destination object in memory: ensuring that the system is utilizing the cache as the first way to process operations;
- Spam indicator metrics: tracking dropped messages, soft bounces, hard bounces, etc.
Benefits of monitoring IronPort
End-to-end IronPort monitoring allows you to be proactive in avoiding issues before the affect your business. GSX’s real-time dashboard can be shared across multiple teams in your network and messaging environment that rely directly on IronPort performance and health. Troubleshooting is also made easier, reducing the mean time to repair (MTTR) as well as lengthy calls to the help desk.